"The question is always, 'where is the conflict?' And the hardest thing to do is to write conflict between people who care about each other. It's easy enough to have people who don't like each other carrying on. But if two people really do love each other, and in spite of that are engaged in a conflicted situation, that's harder to do, but it's compelling."
About This Interview
In his three-and-a-half-hour Archive interview, Richard Shapiro talks for a half-hoiur solo and for two-and-a-half hours with his wife/writing partner Esther Shapiro. He discusses writing for late 1960s episodic television including Land of the Giants, as well as working with Natalie Wood on the 1979 television movie The Cracker Factory. In the joint interview, the Shapiros describe creating the hit primetime drama Dynasty. They speak of the characters and the actors who played them, recall some of the well-known storylines, talk about behind-the-scenes production details, and comment on the enduring international popularity of the show. They also touch on the short-lived spin-off series The Colbys, and offer their thoughts on why the show didn't match the success of the original program. They outline their early partnership, writing for the daytime soap opera Love of Life, as well as the television movies Sarah T.: Portrait of a Teenage Alcoholic, Minstrel Man, Intimate Strangers, and John Steinbeck's East of Eden. B-roll consists of several photos from Dynasty. Jennifer Howard conducted the interview on May 7, 2004 in Beverly Hills, CA.